Update on Pennsylvania IDEA Class Action
Pennsylvania is edging closer to implementing a statewide monitoring system to ensure that 250,000 children with disabilities are learning in regular classrooms whenever it's possible.
Pennsylvania Secretary of Education Francis Barnes told a federal judge in Philadelphia Friday that the Pennsylvania Department of Education has the resources for such a system, which would be in place for five years.
The monitoring system is part of the provisional settlement agreement of an 11-year class-action lawsuit between the PDE and 12 Pennsylvania families, including three from Bucks.
PDE officials and parents on the plaintiff's side spoke in support of the agreement Friday at a public hearing before U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno, who said he may decide on the settlement in the coming months.
Known as the "Gaskin Case," the suit was filed by 12 families who said their children were denied the right to a free public education in regular classrooms with the necessary services whenever it was possible. The federal Individual with Disabilities Education Act protects that right.